Germany’s economy grew 0.2% in the first quarter, unchanged from the first estimate


By Maria Martinez

Germany’s economy grew in the first quarter despite Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which hurt private consumption and manufacturing activity in March, as supply chain disruptions worsened and energy prices have risen.

According to a second estimate for the period released Wednesday by German statistics office Destatis, Germany’s gross domestic product rose 0.2% adjusted from the previous quarter. The figure is unchanged from the first estimate and in line with forecasts by economists polled by The Wall Street Journal.

Despite the difficult conditions in the global economy, the German economy has started 2022 with slight growth, Destatis Chairman Georg Thiel said in the report.

GDP for the quarter is down 0.9% compared to the fourth quarter of 2019, the quarter before the start of the Covid-19 crisis.

The economy grew 3.8% year-on-year in the first quarter on a calendar- and price-adjusted basis, more than the 3.7% first estimate or forecast by economists polled by the Journal.

“The war in Ukraine and the continuing Covid-19 pandemic have intensified existing distortions, including disruptions to supply chains and rising prices,” Thiel said.

In the difficult situation of rising prices on the one hand and the easing of pandemic-related restrictions on the other, household consumption expenditure remained at about the same level as in the previous quarter. Government consumption expenditure also changed slightly, rising 0.1% in the quarter.

Positive contributions came from gross fixed capital formation – investment in fixed assets. Due to the mild weather in the first quarter, gross fixed capital formation in construction increased by 4.6% quarter on quarter despite considerable price increases. Gross fixed capital formation in machinery and equipment rose 2.5% from the previous quarter.

Total foreign trade fell at the start of the year. Exports in the first quarter of 2022 were down 2.1% from the previous quarter due to supply chain constraints, Destatis said. Imports rose 0.9% as imports of services increased significantly due to increased travel.

Write to Maria Martinez at [email protected]


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